Family helps other families


A GENEROUS Cairns family touched by heart disease has come forward to help other heart patients in the Far North.
The family, who did not wish to be identified, have pledged $100,000 to the Far North Queensland Hospital Foundation’s cardiac catheter laboratory project.
The commitment brings the total raised by the Foundation to $1.3 million – leaving just $100,000 still to be raised.
They met with the Foundation and Cairns Hospital director of cardiology Dr Greg Starmer just before Christmas, and confirmed their commitment to support the project.
The siblings are acting on behalf of a family trust, set up by their father, a well known local cane farmer and business man.
“Dad had his first heart attack aged 60 and five years later he had a quintuple bypass in Brisbane,” the family said.
“We had another 23 wonderful years with our Dad, he died 10 years ago of an unrelated matter and so when we saw that the Foundation was fundraising for something that would help other heart patients, it seemed fitting that we do this in his honour,” the sister said.
Just before Christmas, the pair met with Cairns Hospital director of cardiology Dr Greg Starmer, who explained how their money would make a difference.
Ironically, Dr Starmer and the man are both “Saints boys”, albeit a few years apart.
“We love that the money stays here and that we can see exactly what it's going to. We're with you,” the brother said to Dr Starmer.
Foundation fundraising and marketing manager Glenys Duncombe said she was simply blown away by the community's commitment to making the second cath lab a reality.
“We've now received significant donations of $423,000 and a pledge of $100,000 towards this project in just a couple of months and we're so grateful to these generous people,” Ms Duncombe said.
“We've still got the money to be tallied from Christmas Wrap and the Car for Cardiac which concludes on January 24, 2018, so I think we'll only have $50,000 to go then,” she said.
People can contribute by making a tax deductible donation directly via or buying tickets in the “Car for Cardiac” - also on the website or at Cairns Central until January 2, 2018 and then at Stockland Earlville until January 23, 2018.

Photo: Cairns Hospital director of cardiology Dr Greg Starmer, with the Foundation's Glenys Duncombe at the launch of the "Car for Cardiac".

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